NWK

NWK

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Yeah...

File all of this under "I Should've Known", with virtually everything else.

I started planning things for November and found out the stove and oven didn't work. The unit had to be replaced. It was installed incorrectly and had to be redone. (The dishwasher followed a few months later, after a violent, noisy shuddering of the pipes and some water flooding the kitchen. Followed by some leaking from the hot water heater. Just shoot me, JFC.)

Nothing ever changes for the better, does it? I guess there is some sort of balance achieved here and there, as the wheel of fortune spins and spins and spins.

I am job hunting once again. I was needed for two semesters. I am not needed for summer, and fall is uncertain. I hope I am able to get some unemployment for a bit, and I really, really hope I can land something more stable by fall. Another move. Another small fortune in that. Goodness, it never ends.

Silly me for choosing this career, I suppose, but I had no idea that hatred would affect this field in this country as much as it is right now. It's nearly impossible for some to get visas, and the rest of them look at us and say, "Fuck, no, I don't want to go to school and live there. That place is a shit show!" And they would be 100% correct.

Guess that tarot side hustle is gonna be my thing for a while, once again. That and who knows what else. The bf hasn't found a job yet. Maybe I can get him to sell some plasma in town. I would, but they have strange rules and restrictions involving tattoos and such.

Anyway, the hunt for something full-time is on once again. Time to get the candles lit and such. Just wanted to update anyone who might still read this. Maybe I'll be active this time around. Fourteen months of unemployment the last time wasn't great for my writing. Or will to live, in general.

Keep your eyes on this space because you just never know!

Saturday, October 28, 2017

November is a Tasty Month

My menus are finished, and just in time! I still don't know what I'm going to make on Samhain, though. I'll hit the store at some point between now and then and see what speaks to me. I can say, though, that I have a pretty good idea of what we'll be eating for the month of November!

I have discussed my dietary changes from November 1 until Yule (here: A Fall Fast , and I even put together an e-booklet of vegetarian recipes (here: Feasting when the Veil is Thin ). This year, I am repeating a few favorites, but I'm also working on some new ideas, recipes for which I will share when they are ready.

The following link is to my calendar of menus for the month of November. As always, I have tried to utilize as many seasonal ingredients as possible, while also considering their spiritual significance for the season. Elements of earth and water are represented, as are foods that are ruled by the moon or by fire. Fire warms us in the late fall and through the winter. It reminds us that the sun will soon reappear and we will be able to celebrate.

I find that organizing my meals in this way serves several purposes. This is just what works for me. I like to delve deep into the creative process and see everything all together. It's always a work in progress, though. The days are flexible. Some weeks are really heavy on the beans, and while I enjoy the musical fruit, I do not always enjoy the music my body produces. Yikes. So that's an example of when I might move some meals around.

I'm planning on leftovers for lunches, as well as rotating leftovers and reworking them a bit. Leftover macaroni and cheese? Leftover chard? Combine them.

You'll notice a good bit of tofu, Brussels sprouts, and lentils. Rice, pasta, and potatoes are staple starches. I'll be playing around with my extensive spice collection to find enticing flavor combinations. I don't typically plan desserts, unless it's for a special menu, but I know I'll have to have some sweet stuff. I'll be sure to keep the blog updated.

Also, I'm not going to beat myself up if I give in to a craving for something. Stress is neither wanted nor needed. I'm also taking Thanksgiving Day off so I can have turkey wings. hehehe

After all that rambling, I present:

Feasting Through the Veil: November 2017 Vegetarian Recipes


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Menu Planning

Samhain is nearly here, and you know what that means - vegetarian meals from Nov. 1 until Yule. Now, my kitchen is completely ready yet, and the dining area is still a mass of boxes and containers that need to be moved around. But that doesn't mean I can't get my menus ready!

I put together Feasting When the Veil is Thin a while back and will use several of those recipes in meal plans for this time. I'm also working on some tasty new additions. I'll be posting my November calendar shortly. Recipes will come as I prepare the dishes. Weekends will be used to prep and cook many things, but my new schedule is a bit more open these days, meaning I have some more time and energy to cook after work.

I haven't cooked a meal in ages. I've been here for over two months on my own, no pots and pans or anything. My microwave has been my best friend, along with a variety of less-than-healthy restaurant options. I am really looking forward to getting back into my favorite room of the house, and I hope you will join me once I get there.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Samhain Goals and Other Goals

It's October 18 already. Holy crap! My household has been here with me for a week, and guess what? That's right - we're still unpacking! Including the kitchen. Oh, boy.

One problem I have (out of 2847987259873972 or so) is getting too far ahead of myself. Putting too many irons in the fire. It is difficult for me to focus on one task at a time, but I am doing my best.

October Goals:
- Unpack and organize kitchen stuff
- Plan my Samhain menu for the living and the dead
- Tweak my post-Samhain vegetarian menu plans

Short-Term Future Goals:
- Put together plans for menus using Yule foods
- Continue recipe development for the larger cookery book project

This Samhain, I still need to decide what I want to purge. I'm slowly getting rid of physical items that I no longer use, but for Samhain, I need to get rid of some hangups, some baggage.

I need to believe that I can be successful. There's a first time for everything, right? I need to work on letting go of some of this horrible self doubt. I need to believe that someone somewhere is interested in what I am trying to accomplish. There's a serious lack of support in my life, unfortunately. Yes, some people are busy with their own things, but for the most part, people simply do not care because it's not about them.

That leads me to believe I need to purge some of these unsupportive buttholes from my life, as well. Time to make a list.

What are your Samhain plans? I am still trying to figure out what I will be able to do. A lot of it depends on the unpacking process. Soooooo, I think I will go downstairs and see what can be unboxed and put away.

Monday, October 9, 2017

It's So Easy! (Not)

This came across my Facebook feed this morning, and I thought it was worth sharing. This is a topic that I try to keep in mind when I am planning sabbat menus, developing recipes for my own projects, or just thinking about what to make for dinner during the week. My kitchen is currently being packed into a U-Haul by my poor, sweet Aussie, along with everything else that is on its way to NC from WV.

The Myth of 'Easy' Cooking

This article, posted in The Atlantic by author Elizabeth G. Dunn in November 2015, discusses the promise of restaurant-quality, gourmet meals at home, in a snap! Except...not. Now, I don't have children, but I do have a full-time job, pretty shitty clinical depression, and chronic pain. These things combine to make me feel like absolute crap at the end of many days, with no motivation to even chop an onion, much less slap together a "simple" quiche or "instant" pasta carbonara.

Nah, fuck that. I'm almost ashamed to say we actually did a lot of takeaways. Obviously not ashamed enough to omit that information from my blog, however. And you know what? We'll probably do it here sometimes, too because even though I love cooking, the cleaning up process takes forever. We don't always have the energy to do a thorough job of it, and this place is...considerably buggier than WV. I'm not willing to deal with that. At least we have a dishwasher again. That's incredibly helpful, but I know that there are still evenings when I simply hurt too much to stand and move enough to prepare a proper meal. And I know I'm not alone in that.

Once I have a proper work surface again, I plan to go back into my notes and evaluate what I have planned so far. Is is truly simple? Does it take too much time? Too much effort? Can a busy kitchen witch, perhaps one with children and/or another full-time job prepare these dishes for their sabbat celebration? It's a valid point, I believe, and one I fully intend to address in some way.

Months Later...

She returns.

I have moved. I am employed again! It's temporary, renewing every semester (booo), and as always, totally dependent upon student enrollment in the program. But, I'm teaching again, thank the gods. I get paychecks again, thank the gods.

Tomorrow, my boyfriend is scheduled to arrive at the wheel of a U-Haul, completely stuffed with things that I will keep and things that I will get rid of. Our pets will be here. I can see my dog, my cats, my ferret again! One of our sweet little ferrets joined her ferrety ancestors in the Summerlands at the end of August, unfortunately, but she is buried in West Virginia soil. This makes my heart happy because that is where my soul resides forever. Thinking about her is making me tear up a bit right now, though.

This place, while not totally devoid of Pagan folks, is not full of them, either. The closest events seem to be about an hour and a half away, but I hope to be able to connect with people and perhaps host things here. I have plans, but you know how it goes when you make plans. I try to remain flexible, if not entirely hopeful.

I've been here since August 14. My dad drove down with me and stayed for a few days. I lived in a hotel for 3 weeks before finding this little townhouse. Kitchen magic will happen. It will just take some time. I hope readers remember me. I hope to provide you with interesting content again once I am able. After the Great Unpacking and subsequent Great Purge of unneeded, unused items.

Join me. My kitchen will be ready soon. I can offer you coffee, tea, and comfort. Soon there will be food. Get ready.